Constrained monads

There are Haskell types that have an associated monad structure, but cannot be made instances of the Monad class. The reason is typically that the return or the bind operation of such a type m has a constraint on the type parameter of m. As a result, all the nice library support for monads is unusable for such types. This problem is called the constrained-monad problem.

In my article The Constraint kind, I described a solution to this problem, which involved changing the Monad class. In this article, I present a solution that works with the standard Monad class. This solution has been developed by Neil Sculthorpe, Jan Bracker, George Giorgidze, and Andy Gill. It is described in their paper The Constrained-Monad Problem and implemented in the constrained-normal package. Continue reading

MIU in Curry

More than two years ago, my colleague Denis Firsov and I gave a series of three Theory Lunch talks about the MIU string rewriting system from Douglas Hofstadter’s MU puzzle. The first talk was about a Haskell implementation of MIU, the second talk was an introduction to the functional logic programming language Curry, and the third talk was about a Curry implementation of MIU. The blog articles MIU in Haskell and A taste of Curry are write-ups of the first two talks. However, a write-up of the third talk has never seen the light of day so far. This is changed with this article. Continue reading

A taste of Curry

Curry is a programming language that integrates functional and logic programming. Last week, Denis Firsov and I had a look at Curry, and Thursday, I gave an introductory talk about Curry in the Theory Lunch. This blog post is mostly a write-up of my talk. Continue reading

MIU in Haskell

In the Theory Lunch of the last week, James Chapman talked about the MU puzzle from Douglas Hofstadter’s book Gödel, Escher, Bach. This puzzle is about a string rewriting system. James presented a Haskell program that computes derivations of strings. Inspired by this, I wrote my own implementation, with the goal of improving efficiency. This blog post presents this implementation. As usual, it is available as a literate Haskell file, which you can load into GHCi. Continue reading

The Constraint kind

A recent language extension of the Glasgow Haskell Compiler (GHC) is the Constraint kind. In this blog post, I will show some examples of how this new feature can be used. This is a write-up of my Theory Lunch talk from 7 February 2013. The source of this article is a literate Haskell file, which you can download and load into GHCi. Continue reading

Some interesting features of Haskell’s type system

One of the most important ingredients of Haskell is its type system. Standard Haskell already provides a lot of useful mechanisms for having things checked at compile time, and the language extensions provided by the Glasgow Haskell Compiler (GHC) improve heavily on this.

In this article, I will present several of Haskell’s type system features. Some of them belong to the standard, others are only available as extensions. This is a write-up of a talk I gave on 31 January 2013 during the Theory Lunch of the Institute of Cybernetics. This talk provided the basics for another Theory Lunch talk, which was about the Constraint kind. Continue reading

Dependently typed programming and theorem proving in Haskell

Programming languages with dependent types allow us to specify powerful properties of values using the type system. By employing the Curry–Howard correspondence, we can also use these languages as proof languages for higher-order logics. In this blog post, I want to demonstrate that Haskell as supported by the Glasgow Haskell Compiler (GHC) can give us almost the same features. Continue reading